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15 June 2013

Workshop on The Underground Economy in East Asia: Impact on Human and Health Security

KE Workshop on Global Governance, Underground Economy and its Impact on Health and Human Security in Greater China and East Asia

15 June 2013, 9.00am - 5.30pm
Room 4.36, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU

click to see poster

Over the course of the last two decades, East Asia has been rocked by scandals associated with melamine milk powder, poisonous “lead”-laced toys, counterfeit drugs, “drainage” oil, pesticide tainted crops and livestock fed with excessive growth stimulants. There are now fake food products of every nature, ranging from the more ubiquitious imitations of processed food products like Shark Fin and Bird Nests to the more innovative fake “tofu” and “eggs”. The underground economic activities in China are responsible for existence of many other harmful products. It is estimated that counterfeit or substandard drugs are responsible for around 300,000 deaths annually in China alone. Glycerin-substituted cough medicine have been traced to large factories in China that allegedly killed more than a hundred children in Africa. Chinese Triads and Japanese Yakuzas are smuggling psychoactive drugs, illegal migrants and sex slaves worldwide. Everyday, numerous trucks carrying illegally-obtained resource such as timber, fishery products, animal parts and other contraband cross national borders in East Asia. As these illicit industries pose unprecedented transnational risks for the countries involved, they generate tremendous concerns for government officials, law enforcement, public health communities and local citizens, This one-day workshop, sponsored by the Knowledge Exchange Impact Project Fund and the HKU 82’ Alumni Green Fund provides a forum for the public, HKU staff and students as well as specialists from East Asia to exchange views on the development and growth of the various illicit industries in East Asia. The papers would address the impact of these illicit industries on health and human security and consider the challenges these activities have for global governance.

All are welcome.

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